APOLLO

Real Name: Phoebus Apollo

Occupation: Prince of Olympus, Adventurer, God of light, inspiration, music, poetry, prophecy and the sciences

Legal Status: Citizen of Olympus

Identity: The general populace of Earth believes Apollo to be a character out of mythology.

Other Aliases: Aplu (Etruscan Name), Ekhi (Basque name), Lyceius, Paul Belvedere, Rene Andre, Apollo Reason, (mortal aliases) - (He was often confused with the sun-god Helios)

Place of Birth: Island of Delos (now part of modern Greece)

Marital Status: Single

Known Relatives: Zeus (father), Leto (mother); Hera (step-mother), Artemis (sister); Cronus, Coeus (grandparents), Rhea, Phoebe (grandmothers); Hercules, Ares, Hermes, Hephaestus, Dionysus (half-brothers); Athena, Aphrodite, Hebe, Eileithyia, Helen, Discord, Persephone (half-sisters), Asteria, Demeter, Hestia (aunts), Chiron, Poseidon, Hades (uncles), Asclepius, Janus, (sons), Troilius, Linus, Philammon (sons, deceased), Cupid (nephews), Harmonia (niece); Hecate, Arion, Despoena, Triton (cousins)

Group Affiliation: Gods of Olympus

Base of Operations: Olympus

First Appearance: (historical) Venus #1, (recent) Thor #129

History: Apollo is the son of Zeus, Lord of the Olympian Gods and his seventh wife, Leto, the goddess of the day. After conquering Olympus, Zeus chose his most recent paramour, Hera, to be Queen of the Gods at his side. Hera had always hated his earlier wives along with their children and strived to establish her own children by Zeus as above all the others. Many of Zeusís previous wives left Olympus to live in willing exile such as Maia and Dione, but others such as Demeter and Mnemosyne stayed on Olympus unopposed. Leto meanwhile fled to Earth as Hera cursed her to grow heavy with child and never find peace anywhere that the sun shone. She also sent a great serpent called Python to torment and pursue her and enforce her curse. Zeus eventually asked Poseidon to help Leto find peace. He guided her to the tiny island of Delos and hid her under constant storm clouds to conceal her from Hera.   Unable to see her, Hera instructed her first-born daughter, Eileithyia to stall off the birth of Letoís children in fear that she would give birth to Zeusís first born-son. Zeusís other wives soon rallied to Letoís cause and instructed Iris the rainbow-goddess to deliver Eileithyia to Letoís side. Unwillingly to allow Leto to suffer once more, she helped her to deliver her daughter Artemis and then Apollo, Zeusís first-born son ahead of Ares, Heraís son by Zeus. 

As the first-born son of Zeus, Apollo inherited more prestige than any of Zeusís other children. The Titaness Themis, Zeusís second wife, schooled him in the use of his powers and the Centaur Chiron, Zeusís half-brother, trained him to be a master archer. He was also schooled in music by his half-sisters, the Muses, and counted them among many of his first infatuations. Caring more about his skills as an archer, Apollo tracked down Python and killed it for harassing his mother years before. Themis left him her oracle at Delphi to be his and the oracle there became known as the Pythoness after the slain Python.

Like his father, Apollo also gathered a reputation courting goddesses and female mortals. He seduced the goddess Iris and she gave birth to the two-faced god Janus who later took his place as guardian at the gates of Olympus. Both he and Hermes courted the mortal Chione and eventually seduced her separately one night. She gave birth to Apolloís son, Philammon, and Hermesí son, Autolycus. Apolloís most famous son was Asclepius who developed the most advanced skill in medicine known for the time. After Hades complained to Zeus that Asclepius had found ways to keep mortals from dying, Zeus struck down Asclepius with a lightning bolt and killed him. Angered over the murder of his son, Apollo stormed Olympus and slew the Cyclopes that forged his fatherís thunderbolts.

As a penance for this crime, Zeus stripped Apollo of his godhood and sent him to do penance as a slave to King Admetus of Pherae. Admetus turned out to be a kind and fair king who befriended the mortal Apollo. They became such good friends that he predicted for him the day he was going to die. When Thanatos, the god of death, came for Admetus, his wife, Alcestis, volunteered to go in his place. Hercules meanwhile learned of this pact and wrestled Thanatos to a standstill to prevent him from claiming her.

Eventually reclaiming his godhood, Apollo returned to Olympus, but the attention to him made Aphrodite jealous. She instructed her son, Cupid, to smite Apollo with love for the goddess Daphne and then to smile Daphne with a spell of indifference. Daphne ended up changing herself to a tree to escape him, and as her mortal husband Leucippus came to defend her, Apollo slew him in return.

Apollo also took times to defend his sister Artemis and to remind her of her choice of chastity. When she started to fall in love with Poseidonís son, Orion, Apollo tricked her into killing Orion in a fabricated accident. They also joined forces to kill the giant Tityus as he tried to conquer Olympus and joined forces to slay the children of the Theban Queen Niobe for insulting their mother.

Apollo and Artemis both favored the Trojans during their war with the unified forces of Ancient Greece. Apollo had been courting the Trojan princess Cassandra and even bestowed upon her gifts of prophecy. When she began to spurn his further advances, he altered her ability so that no one would believe her predictions and as a result, Troy fell to the Greek Armies.

Gradually, Zeus allowed worship of the Olympian Gods to decline to favor the changes in mortal society.  Having neglected his followers for some time to indulge in romantic affairs, Apollo still cavorted with mortals and even posed as a mortal after having to live as one. At some point in the Middle Ages, he became involved in the Crusades and even renounced his position as a god, but not his immortal status to become Christianized. Although he still possessed his godly powers, he barely acknowledged his past as a god. This conversion started a tradition among other immortals looking for meaning in the demise of paganism whereas immortals such as Brigid of the Gods of Avalon also acknowledged interests in Christianity.

Apollo also continued certain heroics as he came to the aid of mortals. In the Sixth Century AD, he and the Celtic God Lugh both pursued a dragon to Loch Ness in what is modern-day Scotland. They bound the creature to the lake and had their spells augmented by the local Abbott, St. Columba. Since reconciling his sibling rivalries with Aphrodite, he followed her to Earth while she posed as a mortal named Vanessa Nutley Starr and began calling himself Paul Belvedere in order to keep an eye on her activities. After unusual solar activity brought him to Olympus to inspect the cause, Apollo became reunited with Daphne and they placed aside their previous apprehensions. Zeus, however, sent the two of them to Earth to test Aphroditeís choice to stay on earth. Posing as the mortals Renee Andre and Rona Belladonna, they interceded in the romance of Meg Saunders and her boyfriend Danny, but Aphrodite succeeded in keeping them together and won her fatherís approval to stay on Earth.

Apollo meanwhile began to enjoy his role as a superhero before mortals in the Twentieth Century and partook on other adventures. He and Aphrodite joined forces to prevent a self-styled warlock calling himself the Son of Satan (Not to be confused with Damon Hellstrom who once also used that name) when he conjured a flood on Earth. They both had to be rescued by Hercules when the ancient god Typhon invaded Olympus and cast them along with the other gods to the ethereal Land of Shades. In recent years, Apollo also joined forces with Thor, Quetzalcoatl, Shango and Tawa in defeating the primeval entity known as Demogorge released by the gods of the dead.

Apollo meanwhile started to follow Hercules around and even took an interest in his adventures. After Hercules lost his usual garments while fighting the Blood Brothers, Apollo visited him on earth to deliver him a new outfit designed by Hephaestus. After Hercules was gravely injured battling the Masters of Evil, Apollo attempted to tend to his wounds in Olympus. The Avengers, accused by Zeus of having caused the injuries, sought Apollo for his assistance, and he agreed to assist them. However, Zeus quickly learnt of his treachery and struck him down along with his other children who had allied themselves with the Avengers.  Zeus was ultimately made to realize his mistake in falsely accusing the Avengers in Hercules injuriesí and ordered all of the Olympians to remain away from earth. Dismayed with the edict, Apollo still attended to the injuries of the Avengers, healing Captain America's legs that Zeus had broken and an injury Dr. Druid had suffered to the head. However, he was unable to heal any of Thor's injuries as Thor was then suffering from a curse laid on him by the death-goddess Hela.

Seemingly temporarily separated from Earth, Apollo still remains fascinated with Earth and all its champions and especially its modern culture in music and entertainment. He recently attended a feast held in honor of the Hulk, who was visiting Olympus but wound up in a drunken stupor, unable to compete with the Hulk's incredible liver.

According to one alternate future of the Twentieth-Fourth Century, Zeus and all the Olympian Gods except for Hercules leave this plane of existence so that Hercules may father a new generation of gods. On another planet somewhere in the galaxy, Apollo takes prisoner the crew of the USS Starship Enterprise in his search for companionship, but upon revealing they have outgrown any need for gods, he lets them go to explore the universe. It is unrevealed if this is part of the mainstream timeline.

Height: 6í0Ē
Weight: 525 lbs.
Eyes: Blue
Hair: Blonde

Strength Level: Apollo possesses superhuman strength enabling him to lift (press) 40 tons under optimal conditions.

Known Superhuman Powers: Apollo possesses the conventional physical attributes of the Olympian Gods. Like all Olympian Gods, he is immortal. He has not aged since reaching adulthood and cannot die by any known conventional means. He is immune to all known terrestrial diseases and is invulnerable to conventional injury. If wounded, his godly life force would enable him to recover with superhuman speed. It would take an injury of such magnitude that it dispersed a major portion of his bodily molecules to cause him a physical death. Even then, it might be possible for Zeus or a number of gods of equal power working together to revive him. Apollo does have some superhuman strength and his own Olympian metabolism gives him far greater than human endurance in all physical activities. (Olympian flesh and bone is about three times as dense as similar human tissue, contributing to Olympian super-strength and weight.)

Apollo also has considerable power to tap into and manipulate ambient mystical energies more than any other Olympian God except of course Zeus, Poseidon and possibly Hades. He can generate and radiate great heat and light comparable to a small sun and even discharge lightning bolts but on a level no where close to Zeus. He can also bestow enchantments upon people and animals and inflict curses. He is highly skilled in prophecy and foresee into alternate timelines and future events with some accuracy. Like all gods, he can teleport through dimensions and alter his form.

Abilities: Apollo is a master archer, discus-thrower and Olympic-class athlete. He is also musically inclined and can play the lyre. He has an excellent singing voice and is highly charismatic.

Weapons: Apollo has a gold longbow constructed for him by the Cyclopes as a gift from his father. Various enchantments on it increase the accuracy of his targets. His quiver of gold arrows is likewise enchanted to never empty of arrows no matter how fast or often he uses them.

Transportation: At least in ancient times, Apollo traveled extensive distances or through worlds on a flying chariot pulled by two flying carnivorous horses. Actually owned by Helios the sun god, the chariot always appears as a flash of blinding light, which only immortals can see through. Its appearance in modern times was often mistaken as a flying saucer.

CLARIFICATIONS: Apollo should not be confused with:

   

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